This Valentine’s, Community Chest Durban is highlighting those in our community living with disabilities, whether they be physical or mental. It is these children and adults who need constant love and care that spans a lifetime. We salute those NPO Impact Partners who focus on this sector and their staff who take care of the beneficiaries’ every need.
In South Africa, the national disability prevalence rate is 7,5%. The prevalence of a specific type of disability shows that 11% of persons aged five years and older had seeing difficulties, 4,2% had cognitive difficulties (remembering or concentrating), 3,6% had hearing difficulties, and about 2% had communication, self-care and walking difficulties.
Persons with severe disabilities experience difficulty in accessing education and employment opportunities.
Sonke Care Centre for the Disabled in KwaNdengezi provides education for children between the ages of 4 and 18 years. Five staff members, both male and female, manage the educational programmes provided.
According to Nokuthemba Gumede who runs the Centre, the biggest challenge is space. “Parents are willing to bring their children to learn but we cannot enrol them as space is so limited. We need to purchase a prefabricated home or build a roof covering with open sides to cater for more children who need our help.”
The Ramakrishna Mzamo Home, based in Verulam, currently have 24 children in their care.
The Home offers therapeutic and stimulation programmes run by a part-time Occupational Therapist together with their Child and Youth Care workers. The Transversal Team from the Department of Education is made up of a Speech Therapist, Psychologist, Educator and Occupational Therapist.
“This team concentrate on educational development while the majority of our staff concentrate on the well-being of the child. This includes daily routine, bathing, feeding, brushing teeth, changing and washing their linen and clothes,” explains Home manager, Nancy Chiluvane.
“We have a Nursing Sister who checks and assesses the children every day. Those who are not well are referred to a clinic or hospital. She administers medication and ensures the children are up to date with their appointments.”
According to Ms Chiluvane, the biggest need is appropriate wheelchairs for the children and a bigger vehicle to accommodate the children who have to go to appointments, the hospital or on outings.
“The saddest part of our job is realising that some children have been forgotten and their social worker and family members aren’t going to work together to reintroduce them into a family environment,” concludes Ms Chiluvane.
Please follow the link to our donate page and help us to help our NPO Impact Partners who care for people with disabilities. The need is far greater than you can imagine. https://www.communitychest.co.za/donate